Afghanistan: Working group on rights of Afghan women

The Working Group on the Rights of Afghan Women
Submission to the Tokyo conference on Afghan Reconstruction, 21-22 January 2002.
The Working Group on the Rights of Afghan Women welcomes the message of the Secretary General of the United Nations that there cannot be true peace and recovery in Afghanistan without a restoration of the rights of women.
It calls on delegates at the Tokyo Conference on Afghan Reconstruction to give their urgent attention to the concerns expressed in the following: The UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women and Peace and Security - which emphasises the importance of equal participation and full involvement of women in all efforts for the maintenance and promotion of peace and security.

- The European Parliament Resolution of 13/12/01 on Women in Afghanistan.

- The Brussels Proclamation, drawn at the Afghan Women’s Summit in Brussels on 5 December 2001, which identifies education and culture, human rights and violence against women, health, refugee issues and conflicts prevention as the main priorities for women.

- The Declaration of the Essential Rights of Afghan Women, produced by Afghan women in June 2000 in Tajikistan.

The Working Group on the Rights of Afghan Women further:

1. Calls for the granting of international aid for the reconstruction of Afghanistan to be made conditional on the participation of women in decision-making and in the use of such aid.

2. Calls on donor countries to ensure that Afghan women are the direct beneficiaries of at least half the economic aid provided for the reconstruction of Afghanistan.

3. Calls on donor countries to provide funds for local women's organisations to support women's needs and interests.

4. Calls on donors to provide the Ministry of Women’s Affairs with sufficient funds to achieve its objectives.

5. Calls on donors to ensure that the gendered impact of all interventions is assessed in designing these interventions and in monitoring them.

6. Calls on donors to support initiatives to end violence against women, and particularly sexual violence.

7. Calls on donors to support initiatives that strengthen women’s economic security.

8. Calls on donors to ensure that women and girls have full access to programmes for education and health care.

9. Calls on donors to institute specific programmes encouraging women to take part in political activity, both as voters and as candidates in elections at all levels.

10. Calls on the international community to exert pressure on the Afghan Government to ratify the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and the statutes of the International Criminal Court.